He is a poet and he didn’t know it until a poem written for a friend changed his mind.Now with the launch of his second book complete, he plans to take his literary career forward.Ricardo Korkee says he always had a way with words and the longing for his family’s companionship was one of the main drivers of him penning his feelings.Korkee (42) writes predominantly in Afrikaans as his home language.“I wrote poetry for a number of years and one day I wrote a poem for someone who was in need of some encouragement. After she read it she asked me why I don’t publish them,” he says.He met up with another published poet who introduced him to the publishers who now carry both his books.The poem that started it all, Beweeg Berg, is also the title of his first book.“Some of the poems I wrote over a number of years and it is old stock that I dusted off,” he says.He explains that he was working abroad and missing his wife Indiana and his two children Spelling of names are correct Kaylum and Camerin.“I am lucky enough to have the talent to put my thoughts and emotions down on paper,” he says.His first book was also met with much success, having sold almost 200 copies following its launch last year.He generates his own sales and says self published authors are not fortunate enough to have their books sold in book stores.“I did not see myself as a poet but after the success of the first book I feel I am on the stage now and people know about me and my talent,” he says.With this in mind, Korkee set out to do his second compilation of poems.His second book Van die Dal, Op die Digtersarena, is an ode to his home town Bloemendal in the Eastern Cape.“I tried to stick to one theme but there are subsections,” he says.His second book was launched on Sunday 14 August and features his life story from growing up on the streets on Bloemendal and his journey to the cape.His nostalgia is evident and has already resonated with some of his fans who follow his social media accounts.Korkee writes primarily in Afrikaans and is a language teacher.“Afrikaans is my home language and Afrikaans is diminishing in our institutions as English becomes the language of instruction. I feel the onus is on us who use the language to keep it alive,” he says.This is his aim with his poetry, although he has limited resources.He also features two English poems in his new book with colloquial slang to help make it relatable.He says although he often touches on serious topics, he still approaches it with humour and satire.He says he will make his first book available again after the run for his second book is complete.“There has been a huge request for the first book and I will add and edit the poems and then make the book available again,” he says.He says the writing bug has bitten and he would like to venture into short stories and other literature and a third book may be on the cards.“As a writer from Mitchell’s Plain – a so-called bruin gemeenskap, I want to encourage people not to be hesitant. There are many people who have talents. If you have a product put it out there and let people know about it,” he says. V To buy his book call Korkee on 078 529 7150 or email him on firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also follow his work on his Facebook Page Ricardo Korkee Skrywersblad.